Qld Discount Vitamins - Clifford Gardens

Nutritional information for athletes, people who interested in optimal health.

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Bloating, GI Issues and Single Sugar Electrolytes

Ever found yourself in the final stages of the bike and finding  you have your gut complaining? Or half way into your run and your looking for the closest bush?

If you have ever had this happen to you it sometimes means the end of your race as you planned it. Literally it can have you walking the run and scanning your brain to try and work out what you did wrong with your race nutrition.

The reason I titled this as ‘Single sugar’ is what athletes will often come up with as the problem, and by problem I mean Maltodextrin. Maltodextrin is what makes up most of these single sugar formulas.

But Maltodextrin isn’t the issue here, yes you heard it, it’s actually you that’s the cause of the problem. Well to be correct your gut is the issue.

As most of us do we blame the products or the tools, but this time we have to look back at what you have been doing with that process factory we call the stomach. Issues like bloating, diarrhea and gastric issues can be traced back to what you have done in the months prior to your event and NOT the electrolyte formula you had been handed out on race day.

Rewind the clock, go back to a few months prior to your race, Most of us will say that we trained on the formula that we raced with and had no issues with it.

Stress, we all know that, but what about training stress and GI stress? Most of us know stress as something that happens in the lead up and before the start of a race, but the body goes through a multitude of different stress’s when racing, much more that our hardest simulation.

So back to the gut, how do we fix it?

Speak to the team at Qld Discount Vitamins – Clifford Gardens to find out how to nail your nutrition on race day and have your gut working the way it needs to.

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Healthy Habits Of Fit Triathletes

Read the hunger signals. To stay lean year-round, learn to eat when hungry and pass when full. This also means that you don’t feel pangs of guilt for chowing down on seconds because you know when you need it. Athletes who constantly restrain themselves suffer more guilt and are more likely to have blowouts.

Sit down for meals. As a busy athlete juggling three sports, it’s easy to eat on the go all the time. Sit down to eat meals and switch off distractions to fully enjoy your food and be aware of exactly what (and how much) you’re putting in your body.

Don’t overestimate calories burned. Many athletes overeat after a big workout because they think they can make up for a huge calorie expenditure. Try to only modestly increase intake to more accurately match training demands.

Get organized. Shop and stock your cupboards, fridge and emergency stash locations so you’ll have less impulse eating and reliance on fast food or sugary hits. Have a plan for meals and snacks throughout the day.

Eat (healthy) fats. Fat is satiating and essential for optimal health, functioning and energy. This means you should eat fatty foods such as salmon, nuts, olive oil and coconut oil.

Focus on you. What your body needs is not what your colleague, training partner or spouse needs. Don’t stack your plate next to theirs.

Get adequate sleep. Calorie consumption increases when you are tired. Getting a full night’s sleep will keep you on track.

Don’t skip meals to lose weight. Getting overly hungry will just raise cortisol (stress hormone) levels and make weight loss harder. Plus you are more likely to eventually break down and binge. Slow and steady is the rule for lasting weight loss.

Get enough protein. Protein helps curb appetite and maintain muscle mass even when weight loss occurs.

Extracted from Triathlete.com

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Mitochondria & ATP Powering you performance

Many of you may wonder what mitochondria are and why you should care about it. As an endurance athlete, the microscopic entities (organelles) located inside your muscle cells known as mitochondria are critical to your training and racing success. It doesn’t matter if you are a beginner or a pro athlete; the proper care and feeding of your mitochondria is crucial. Let’s begin with what a mitochondrion (singular) is. Mitochondria Explained Mitochondria are affectionately referred to in almost every academic physiology textbook as the powerhouses of the cell. For our purposes we are going to focus on the muscle cells of the skeletal and cardiac (heart) systems but mitochondria populate many other cells of the human body. A mitochondrion is 0.5 to 1.0 microns in size; that represents 0.0000195 to 0.000039 of an inch. To put this in perspective, the head of pin is 2 millimeters in diameter. Mitochondria is merely a 4,000th to 2,000th the size of the head of a pin. Up to one-third of the volume of your skeletal or cardiac muscle cell is taken up by mitochondria. Incredulous that something so minuscule can put you on the podium? Here is a distilled version of the cellular physiology behind the magic and how to manage it to your advantage. How Mitochondria Function to Help Produce Energy As athletes, we all know about oxygen and carbohydrates (sugar). The mitochondria take both of these ingredients, also called substrates, and use them to produce the energy (product) that makes your heartbeat and your muscles perform. Glucose (the form of sugar found in our blood stream) is repackaged inside the complex internal structure of the mitochondria into two key components: pyruvate and Nicotinic Adenine Dinucleotide (NADH). These two chemicals are now transported into the central part of the organelle where, in the presence of oxygen (this is of primary importance), they are used to produce ATP (adenosine triphosphate). ATP is a nifty little chemical that is essentially the energy currency (think money, not electricity) of the cell. This all happens via the Krebs Cycle. How ATP Functions Now that I have piqued your interest and you are starting to wonder exactly how that ATP helps you turn the pedals and stride the miles, let’s talk about what ATP actually does. Inside your muscle cell there are tiny little fibrils (essentially filaments of protein) called Actin and Myosin. The complex physical interaction of these fibrils will be the topic of another article, but in the meantime it’s just important to understand that ATP binds to the myosin fibril and causes the muscle to contract (be it skeletal or cardiac). To give you an idea of how important ATP is, Rigor mortis ensues when your body is no longer able to supply ATP to your working muscle cells. If you have ever bonked in a race it was a result of your muscle cells being depleted of glucose, oxygen, and ATP. Production of energy for your working muscles is an extremely complex biochemical recipe, but it can all be boiled down to the simple ingredients of sugar, oxygen, and calcium. Sugar supplies the basic building blocks (remember pyruvate and NADH) that the mitochondria use to produce ATP in the presence of oxygen (the whole process is called oxidative phosphorylation). Calcium is essential to transformation of glucose into the pyruvate and NADH as well as the interaction of the myofibrils myosin and actin mentioned above. The Importance of Oxygen This process is completely dependent on the presence of oxygen as it represents aerobic respiration inside your working muscle cells. Hopefully, this gets started thinking about your heart rate monitor. Your working muscles use glucose to produce ATP at a rate 13 times higher in the presence of oxygen than when oxygen is not readily available. If your heart rate monitor alarm is screaming because you’re exceeding your lactate threshold it won’t be long before you bonk. Now here is the best part – exercise actually results in mitochondrial proliferation within muscle cells. What this means is that by exercising, you are essentially asking your body to provide you with more energy and it responds by revving up its own cellular machinery. The Australian Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology published a fascinating article that explains this in more detail if you’re looking for an in depth publication on the subject. How Can You Help Mitochondria Production Your cellular biochemistry cannot do all the work on it’s own; it needs you to be it’s teammate in the process. How can you help your physiology to perform at it’s best? Here of some simple things you can do to optimise this process and make the best of your training and have a great race performance: Train Smart Overtraining and training without appropriate recovery damages muscles cells and the intracellular machinery. Create training programs and hire a coach if you are able. Stay Hydrated Optimal cellular function is dependent on the right balance of water so that transport of substances occurs readily. Dehydration leads to “gunking” up of the system. Be sure to stay hydrated throughout the day and in training. Fuel Feed your mitochondria a steady diet of available sugar. This means consuming carbohydrates in a manner that gives your cells readily available fuel (glucose) for training and racing and well as eating a well-balanced diet and choosing high-quality recovery snacks to boost your glycogen reserves. Additionally, muscles and mitochondria need protein to proliferate. Make sure your protein intake is adequate and high quality. Constant Oxygen Supply Mitochondria cannot function in an anaerobic environment. Training in zone 2 is the best way to develop more mitochondria. Know your maximum heart rate and lactate threshold and use your heart monitor to keep that oxygen flowing freely to your cells. Electrolytes As we discussed, calcium is integral to the biochemical process, but calcium does not exist and function in isolation. Calcium’s availability and function is inextricably tied to the levels of other electrolytes like potassium and magnesium as well as the pH of the blood. Make sure you are ingesting a balanced mix of electrolytes when training and racing.


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Omega 3 & 6

Omega what?

If you are training at any particular sport you will have at some stage come across inflammation. Now what a lot of athletes don’t know is that you can get better results from altering your nutrition slightly with regards to poly unsaturated fats (Omega 3 & 6).

Fats, they are bad news?

No, your body requires fats to perform at it’ best, as well as Protein and Carbohydrates. So what’s the deal you’re asking me?

With today’s processed foods come an increase in Omega 6 rich ingredients oils, wheat and cereals to name a few. This in turn compared with Omega 3 rich foods such as oily fish, oysters and chia seeds (this is only a few) there is an imbalance in the majority of the population. Take our example living in Toowoomba, we don’t get regular access to fresh seafood compared to our favorite holiday spot on the Sunshine Coast.

Think to yourself, what did you have last night for dinner? A Pizza or a plate of salmon? Now, I’m not saying go and eat a plate load of oily fish, I’d be the first to think twice about that.

Back to the better results for your training, Omega 6 is a pro-inflammatory compared to Omega 3 which is an anti-inflammatory, so when we lift weights, run training or kettle bell training, small tears happen to our muscle fibers producing micro inflammation. With Omega 3 being at a good level in our system, it can do its job and reduce that micro inflammation and help us recover quicker compared to having an abundance of Omega 6 in our system.

Now, the right ratio is around 1:1 for our systems, we still need Omega 6 for daily living, so don’t drop Omega 6 completely.

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Q: I’ve heard that probiotics can help me in training. What are the best sources, and how much do I need daily?

A: Probiotics are a hot topic, with mounting research supporting the notion that consuming probiotics regularly can improve health and well-being. Manufacturers and marketers have caught onto their benefits and, as a result, supermarket shelves are filled with new products touting their probiotic properties.

Here’s the lowdown: Billions of bacteria live inside our gastrointestinal tract. More than 500 of these microbial species are “friendly,” assisting in the function of digestion and supporting the immune system. Many factors can contribute to a disruption of the bacteria within our gut: medications, stress, fatigue, inflammation, nutritional status and even age. The resulting reduction in beneficial bacteria gives potentially harmful disease-causing bacteria the opportunity to flourish.

This is where probiotics come in. Ingesting certain foods or supplements containing healthy bacteria can help maintain good gut health. Just as important are prebiotics, the non-digestible food particles (think skins of fruits and vegetables, seeds and nuts) that sustain or fuel the probiotics. Working together, prebiotics and probiotics achieve the best gastrointestinal environment for well-being. Improved health and a stronger immune system means you can train effectively and consistently without interruption due to illness and fatigue.

Here’s what to look for on the label when shopping for probiotics:

Live and active cultures. For probiotics to have any beneficial effects they need to reach the intestine alive and in sufficient numbers. Some products may contain cultures in insignificant amounts—or may have at some point contained cultures that have since been destroyed during the manufacturing process. For a product to claim it has live and active cultures it needs to show it has more than 100 million bacteria per gram at time of manufacture.

Culture count. Ingesting 1 billion CFUs (colony-forming units) per day is helpful for people trying to simply maintain gut health; you should ingest 10 billion CFUs per day if you’re trying to reduce the severity of a gastrointestinal illness.

Culture specificity. Some probiotics work best for specific illnesses, so variety is better. Look for one that lists multiple culture strains.

Pills or food? During times of stress—increased training load, family/work pressures, illness—it might be prudent to increase your consumption of beneficial bacteria, and you may need to supplement with pills or with specialty probiotic “shots” such as Yakult, DanActive or Good Belly Shots. Bacteria can also be concentrated and packaged into pills or tablets for an even greater concentration of CFUs. Strains and strain count vary greatly, as does recommended dose, so check labels carefully.

TIP: Because bacteria are sensitive to heat and light, many probiotics are found refrigerated and must be stored chilled, while others have been stabilized to be effective even at room temperature. Check the “use by” dates and use within the specified time for efficacy.

Sourced from Triathlon competitior
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